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Dyson Daniels "Close to 100 Percent" Going Into Pelicans Training Camp

Dyson Daniels is "close to 100 percent" after a twisted ankle ended his debut with the New Orleans Pelicans.

The New Orleans Pelicans only saw Dyson Daniels play 8 minutes before a twisted ankle ended his NBA Summer League debut. The team was cautious, sitting the 8th overall pick for the remaining four games on the schedule, even though Daniels tried to talk his way back onto the court for the finale against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

It would have been too risky, especially considering the torn ACL suffered by E.J. Liddell. Even Daniels admits though he's "feeling good" the ankle still will not be 100 percent until "the next week or so" according to an interview with team reporter Jim Eichenhofer.

The 19-year-old Australian used the extra time around the team's stars hanging around the sidelines to soak in knowledge and develop chemistry with the leaders in the locker room.

The incoming rookie said, “They’ve been great. I saw them here at the games. I saw them during our training camp as well. They bring you in like you're one of them. They’re very welcoming. Everyone I’ve talked to has said this is one of the best groups they’ve ever worked with, the culture they’ve built and the way they like to be around each other, play for each other and have each other’s backs. That’s special. Team chemistry is important these days and it’s clear to see the Pelicans have that.”

Daniels also heard more from the coaches during games while sitting on the bench and it helped in soaking up the playbook. Summer League Head Coach Jarron Collins had nothing but praise before departing for Las Vegas and the team expects Daniels to compete for minutes this season.

“It’s been very beneficial for me. I was able to learn plays and how we want to play as a team, playing fast. I learned some different sets as a team. I’m sure coming into training camp with the actual team, it’s going to be similar stuff. It’s getting that knowledge down pat."

“Obviously I only played eight minutes," he told Eichenhofer. Daniels did not "get much out of that, but I’ve been analyzing the game. Seeing breakdowns of the game. I’ve been on the sideline seeing how I can impact winning. Just learning the game, and how players get to their spots and get their shots. It’s been a good learning experience, just not the one I expected.”

Daniels acknowledged at the NBA Draft it will be tough to crack into a playoff rotation as a rookie. The plan is to spend the rest of the summer, "getting reps in, getting my conditioning back up. Working with Fred (Vinson) on my shot. Trying to get it off quicker and be more consistent. We’ve been getting reps in and it’s been helping me a lot.

“I’ll be working on my body and being more NBA-ready. Get a good diet and nutrition plan where I’m consistently eating the right foods. Put on some weight. I’ve got the size; I’ve just got to build it out a little bit, get ready for the NBA, and prepare myself for this training camp because it’s going to be a battle.”

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